Innovation is something to cherish. It is a unique or even a simple way of looking at a problem and finding a better way to solve the problem. It is a safety feature like an air bag or a seatbelt. It is lights that turn on in your house when you open your garage door at night. It is automation, it is simplification and presentation.
Recently there have been a number of interesting innovations on Kickstarter and Indiegogo that intrigue me. The products include the Nexdock, and PopSlate. Both are extensions of the concept that you only carry your cellular device and not a computer or tablet. Interesting in that they make interacting with your cellular phone easier. PopSlate is a detachable screen you add to the cellular device while Nexdock is an interest screen. Over time using the software of the systems they will enable USB and other devices so that you will have more memory, and additional capabilities.
360 degree cameras are available. I use the BUBL camera all the time. I love seeing what a room looks like from every angle possible. Its integration with the cloud (for image processing) and the cellular phone make for an impressive presentation. That market continues to grow and expand. This explosion of innovative ideas in part because of the IoT/CPS reality. In part because the reality of tech savvy users and that tech base of users has increased. The integration of your cellular device to the IoT/CPS potential is amazing. There are already great points of integration being the smart watch, and the two new products I’ve mentioned Nexdock and PopSlate. These devices extend your cell phone to a Screen as a Service device (SCRaaS). There are more of these devices coming. Keecker is one that presents interesting potential changes. Keecker is a SCRaaS that adds flexibility to your devices. Because it is also a system running its own OS, it can also operate independently of the cellular device. This comes back to something a very smart person told me a long time ago, while the Swiss Army knife is a great tool, you wouldn’t use it to cut down a tree.
New solar backpacks are emerging. These include the ability to increase the solar panel size when you are stopped, at the same time doing a trickle charge while you are walking. It extends and expands the concept of a micro grid to create the new concept of a personal grid, a home grid and a neighborhood together creating a micro grid. Where within the micro grid you have power production and power distribution that never leaves the micro grid. As more and more houses in a neighborhood add solar power the reality of shared power becomes greater. Of course the reality of multiple solar providers creates a different problem but that one is economic not technology limited. How do you manage the distributed production if you have four solar companies producing the energy? IE WHO GETS PAID!
So I can ask the what’s next question. I won’t but I could. Its why I think Shark Tank whiffed on PopSlate. They didn’t understand the SCRaaS concept fully. I have a smart watch. I have ordered a PopSlate. My intention is not to stop wearing the smart watch. It is gives me direct information that is short. For example, if you get a text that says meet me outside, you wisely check your watch (see text) and then you do what? I look at the weather personally. That is simply taking the phone out of the pocket and seeing what the weather is, always displayed on the PopSlate SCRaaS. Simple, reduces the number of times I have to unlock my phone considerably. Any information that is critical to you can be a notification on a smart watch and further information on the PopSlate system. I wouldn’t however use either to reply to a detailed email. That would be when I would grab the Keecker system or I would grab the Nexdock. Within the concept of SCRaaS is the concept of functionality. The more screen RealEstate you have for complex tasks the better. The smaller the message is, the smaller the SCRaaS can be. Smart watch = quick small information consumption. PopSlate (slightly larger screen) = information I consume frequently but not as small as would present on the Smart Watch and then Nexdock for information I need to see, evaluate and respond to. My favorite that I have used for years is the reality of an Excel spreadsheet or a web meeting. In both those cases you don’t use your cellular phone screen, your smart watch but instead you use Keecker or Nexdock as your SCRaaS.
The screens are coming. The data is already there. It is now surfaced in a way that will make us smarter!